Caolan Lavery expects more chances to come his way at Pompey

Caolan Lavery. Picture: Joe Pepler
Caolan Lavery. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Caolan Lavery insists he has no issue playing the lone striker’s role under Paul Cook, despite his lack of goalscoring opportunities.

The on-loan forward from Sheffield Wednesday started his first game since his arrival in the 0-0 draw with Mansfield at the weekend, replacing Matt Tubbs in the starting line-up.

And although he made a bright opening to the contest, he barely got a sight of goal in his 78 minutes on the pitch before he made way for Tubbs.

Some supporters would prefer to see Pompey playing with a two-man strikeforce – especially at home – after seeing the latest opponents leave Fratton Park with a point.

But Lavery believes some fine-tuning will make all the difference.

Lavery said: ‘I did a lot of running in behind and a lot of chasing the ball.

‘But I had one half-chance when I had a shot blocked and that was probably in about the 60th minute.

‘I’d like to think I would get two or three chances per game but I’m sure that will come with the more minutes I get to play.

‘I’m not too worried. Sometimes you will get four or five chances and it just works that way.

‘As a striker, you are relying on the service sometimes.

‘But it’s a very strong squad with a lot of good players.

‘I’m not concerned about who will be supplying the chances.

‘The gaffer has his own way of playing to the way that I would play myself up front. But I actually enjoy the role he wants me to play.

‘I don’t want to give too much away on what the manager wants me to do.

‘But there are a lot of different ways to play that role.

‘Some managers just want you to stick between the two centre-backs the whole time, others want you to pull wide and some want you to make yourself available for the diagonal as often as possible.

‘Every manager has their own way of doing it.

‘It takes a bit of time to learn something and how it fits into that team.’

Cook’s preferred method is based on possession and control of the game but he has also made it clear he wants to see his team creating more chances.

And Lavery revealed that this week’s training focus will be some intensive work in the attacking third.

He said: ‘The gaffer told us we will be working on our play in the final third this week

‘As a striker, it’s where you make your money so I’m looking forward to a good week of training.

‘There are a few things to work on to give us a bit more edge in the final third.’

But the 23-year-old is also keen to forge a partnership, if Cook opts to change the formation during a game.

He said: ‘I do enjoy playing up front with a partner as well.

‘At Sheffield Wednesday, I played up front with Atdhe Nuhiu a few times.

‘He is a big boy so would usually pull two defenders towards him and that would leave me a bit of extra space.

‘It’s an option but the gaffer has his preferred way of playing so we will see what happens.’